Woodburn Mansion in Delaware
Photo: Courtesy Office of the Governor of Delaware
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Woodburn Mansion

In 1815, Reverend Lorenzo Dow was visiting Dr. and Mrs. Bates at Woodburn in Dover, Delaware. While heading to breakfast one morning, he saw a man he assumed was another guest. When Mrs. Bates asked the Reverend to say grace at mealtime, he suggested they wait for the man he'd seen earlier, but she replied that there were no other guests in the house. When Reverend Dow described the person he'd seen, Mrs. Bates identified him as Charles Hillyard III, Bates's late father and the builder of the 1798 Georgian-style mansion. Today, the structure serves as the official residence of Delaware's Governor, and it is believed that Hillyard—a tippler in life—still materializes to empty the contents of bottles left uncorked in the wine cellar. The mansion, Hillyard's ghost, and the apparition of an unknown young girl in a gingham dress seen by the garden reflecting pool may be visited by appointment.
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